Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: Gary1 On: Thu Jul 11, 2013 10:24 pm

I'm aware of companies that make furnaces that burn both wood and coal, such as the Woodchuck unit made by the Meyer Mfg co, but can anyone tell me if there are any excellent stoves that burn both fuels efficiently?
Last edited by Richard S. on Fri Jul 12, 2013 10:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Moved to Hand Fired Coal Stoves
Gary1
 

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: Lightning On: Thu Jul 11, 2013 10:40 pm

Welcome to the forum partner!! 8-) You will probably get mixed opinions on this. Its tough to burn two different fuels with two different burning characteristics in the same appliance with maximum efficiency of both fuels.. Its like asking if there is a car engine that will burn both gasoline and diesel fuel.. I'm sure it will be interesting to see what others have to say about this... :D
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut Size / White Ash

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Thu Jul 11, 2013 10:48 pm

Damn lightning, you're on a serious roll here:) I'm not a fan at all of multi-fuel units---to many horror stories. Find a coal stove that you can burn wood during the cuff seasons, or just learn how to run a good coal stove properly--
freetown fred
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: HITZER 50-93
Coal Size/Type: BLASCHAK Nut/Stove mix

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Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: franco b On: Thu Jul 11, 2013 10:57 pm

Wood needs a large fire box for the convenience of putting a large load in to get a long burn.

Because for an equal amount of heating units coal takes up far less space the large fire box will not burn the coal as easily or as efficiently as a smaller one with ideal proportions.
Coal also needs a grate system that will easily remove the ash. Air handling for coal will also differ from wood.

The best compromise is to use a good coal stove and then in spring and fall use it for short clean wood fires.
franco b
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: V ermont Castings 2310, Franco Belge 262
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood Modern Oak 114
Coal Size/Type: nut and pea

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: Gary1 On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 6:47 am

Thanks for the input...Gary
Gary1
 

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: Freddy On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:15 am

Gary1 wrote:can anyone tell me if there are any excellent stoves that burn both fuels efficiently?


There are not.

Franco is right.

Sorry, but it's true. Coal demands air from under the fuel, wood likes air from over the fuel. Coal likes it's fuel stacked up tall and skinny, wood likes to lay down for easy loading. Wood likes to make creosote & chimney fires, coal burns clean & dry. Oops...that's not a design issue!

In my opinion, a perfect wood-coal stove would be a 3 foot tall standing tapered pipe 9" at the top and 10.5" at the bottom that filled from the top, but, that's not going to be easy to load wood, nor will it hold enough wood. I guess that's not perfect, is it. <brain melting>

I'd never heard of the Woodchuck stove until you mentioned it. I went & looked at it. I've never seen one, never known of an owner, but I feel I can safely say one thing..... owners of it are not thrilled by how it burns coal.
Freddy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: dcrane On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:28 am

Lightning wrote:Welcome to the forum partner!! 8-) You will probably get mixed opinions on this. Its tough to burn two different fuels with two different burning characteristics in the same appliance with maximum efficiency of both fuels.. Its like asking if there is a car engine that will burn both gasoline and diesel fuel.. I'm sure it will be interesting to see what others have to say about this... :D


Mr. Lightning is right... most any coal stove will indeed burn wood but no wood stove can burn coal...unless it has some laim kit or its design included a grate and liner (In which case its not a real wood stove).
I always thought my dad's Crane 404 was a pretty good attempt at exactly this, but make no mistake...its a Coal Stove 1st and foremost and gives up nothing as a coal stove, it simply has the ability to take horizontal logs yet the firepot has no square corners (a cardinal sin of most dual fuel coal stoves), the grate and liner are removable for overnight burns it also includes the large glass view wood burners enjoy.

However wen it comes to forced induction stokers the game changes quit a bit because liners are not necessary as the grate system does not touch the combustion chamber walls and draft/air flow are totally adjustable. So it is my opinion that a stoker CAN indeed be made to work equally well and equally as efficient as a wood pellet & rice coal burner. It would clearly need an up angle auger system and an adjustable draft regulator, etc., an auto ignite may only be viable for wood pellets but the main issue involves marketing such a stove as a wood burning stove & coal stove (EPA, UL labs, etc.) :mad: But this would be a great product for folks outside PA! PA folks don't realize how uneducated folks outside PA are about coal and how much they NEED to be comforted and feel safe in their purchase and the NEED to be left with ZERO reason why they should not try coal in order to just "try" it one time! (if they try it... we all know they wont be burning wood anymore! simple as that!!!). I think a product like this enables them to try it with zero risk and effort ;)
dcrane
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: dcrane On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:38 am

Freddy wrote:
Gary1 wrote:can anyone tell me if there are any excellent stoves that burn both fuels efficiently?


There are not.

Franco is right.

Sorry, but it's true. Coal demands air from under the fuel, wood likes air from over the fuel. Coal likes it's fuel stacked up tall and skinny, wood likes to lay down for easy loading. Wood likes to make creosote & chimney fires, coal burns clean & dry. Oops...that's not a design issue!

In my opinion, a perfect wood-coal stove would be a 3 foot tall standing tapered pipe 9" at the top and 10.5" at the bottom that filled from the top, but, that's not going to be easy to load wood, nor will it hold enough wood. I guess that's not perfect, is it. <brain melting>

.


I'd never heard of the Woodchuck stove until you mentioned it. I went & looked at it. I've never seen one, never known of an owner, but I feel I can safely say one thing..... owners of it are not thrilled by how it burns coal

Ive never heard of it either but I'd bet my bottom dollar it has a big ole' square corner firebox and some optional kit BS that's gonna warp, twist and scream out for help after coal hits it :lol:

EDIT: OK, I looked at the manual on that woodchuck and even though it indeed does have the big football field with square corners for dead spots on coal it does have an "optional forced draft blower" :lol: (the seniors here know why they need to have that as an option... only valid reason is because "It Aint Workin" :lol: ) Imagine folks if you place a blower at the bottom door of your Glenwood (how hot that coal bed would become :cry: ).... better stock up spare parts for this woodchuck if you plan on burning coal with it!
dcrane
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: blrman07 On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:48 am

Dcrane, I was trying to follow your posting but got confused. Maybe it's a terminology issue.

dcrane wrote:However wen it comes to forced induction stokers the game changes quit a bit because liners are not necessary as the grate system does not touch the combustion chamber walls and draft/air flow are totally adjustable. So it is my opinion that a stoker CAN indeed be made to work equally well and equally as efficient as a wood pellet & rice coal burner. It would clearly need an up angle auger system and an adjustable draft regulator, etc., an auto ignite may only be viable for wood pellets but the main issue involves marketing such a stove as a wood burning stove & coal stove (EPA, UL labs, etc.)


When you refer to "forced induction stokers" are you talking about stoves or furnaces that have a forced draft fan that supplies combustion air under the grate?

When you say that a stoker can be made to work equally well and as efficient as a wood pellet & rice coal burner I am not sure what your talking about because a very large percentage of stokers burn rice coal. I experimented with adding wood pellets to my stoker stove and was successful at a 30/70 ratio of wood pellets to rice coal utilizing a carpet feed system, not an up flow auger. 30% wood pellets to 70% rice coal worked. I didn't feel comfortable increase the ratio due to the flammability of the wood pellets in the hopper.

It was a nice experiment but that is all it was since where I am at wood pellets are over $200 a ton and rice coal is $170. If it flip flops in the future I know I can do the mix.
blrman07
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Bucket a Day
Hand Fed Coal Stove: installing a VC 2310 this summer
Coal Size/Type: Pea/Nut/Wood in the VC and anything that will fit in the Bucket a Day. It's not fussy.

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: dcrane On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 7:56 am

blrman07 wrote:Dcrane, I was trying to follow your posting but got confused. Maybe it's a terminology issue.

dcrane wrote:However wen it comes to forced induction stokers the game changes quit a bit because liners are not necessary as the grate system does not touch the combustion chamber walls and draft/air flow are totally adjustable. So it is my opinion that a stoker CAN indeed be made to work equally well and equally as efficient as a wood pellet & rice coal burner. It would clearly need an up angle auger system and an adjustable draft regulator, etc., an auto ignite may only be viable for wood pellets but the main issue involves marketing such a stove as a wood burning stove & coal stove (EPA, UL labs, etc.)


When you refer to "forced induction stokers" are you talking about stoves or furnaces that have a forced draft fan that supplies combustion air under the grate?

When you say that a stoker can be made to work equally well and as efficient as a wood pellet & rice coal burner I am not sure what your talking about because a very large percentage of stokers burn rice coal. I experimented with adding wood pellets to my stoker stove and was successful at a 30/70 ratio of wood pellets to rice coal utilizing a carpet feed system, not an up flow auger. 30% wood pellets to 70% rice coal worked. I didn't feel comfortable increase the ratio due to the flammability of the wood pellets in the hopper.

It was a nice experiment but that is all it was since where I am at wood pellets are over $200 a ton and rice coal is $170. If it flip flops in the future I know I can do the mix.


Yes.. the main concern would be fire in the hopper if you use a coal stoker (like the LL) and put wood pellets into it. or the auto igniter in the Harmon if you introduced rice coal into it, the draft would surly need to be adjusted differently for wood pellets vs. rice coal etc,etc... A wonderful dual fuel unit can be done and maybe is done already (maybe they cant advertise it as such).

In terms of forcing a draft like that into large football field coal bed (that's what they do to melt iron, not heat a home) :lol:
dcrane
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: wsherrick On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 8:05 am

An adequate dual fuel appliance has never been designed that can burn both wood or coal equally well. They simply don't exist. The best stoves made are fuel specific. That is they are/were designed around the combustion characteristics of whatever the target fuel is. There are stoves that can burn both, but; they either burn wood so. so and are very good with coal or vise verse.

Most wood stoves can't be used to burn coal at all or if they are modified with some grates and some fire brick do a bad job of it.

But if you are like 90% of people here, once you burn coal you will forget about wood altogether or only use it during the early and late part of the heating season. Coal in itself is a vastly superior fuel to wood. It's much less maintenance, cleaner, easier to control and develop a desired amount of heat, it gives constant, steady heat versus the rapid hot/cold cycle of wood burning. There is no creosote, no bark, wet mud, dirt, bugs and it doesn't have to be lugged in several times a day (and night) A 5 gallon bucket of coal will give you the same heat as a giant pile of wood on your porch or taking up space where ever you put it.
In my mind there is no contest.
wsherrick
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Glenwood Base Heater, Crawford Base Heater
Baseburners & Antiques: Crawford Base Heater, Glenwood, Stanley Argand
Coal Size/Type: Chestnut, Stove Size

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: dcrane On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 8:11 am

wsherrick wrote:An adequate dual fuel appliance has never been designed that can burn both wood or coal equally well. They simply don't exist. The best stoves made are fuel specific. That is they are/were designed around the combustion characteristics of whatever the target fuel is. There are stoves that can burn both, but; they either burn wood so. so and are very good with coal or vise verse.

Most wood stoves can't be used to burn coal at all or if they are modified with some grates and some fire brick do a bad job of it.

But if you are like 90% of people here, once you burn coal you will forget about wood altogether or only use it during the early and late part of the heating season. Coal in itself is a vastly superior fuel to wood. It's much less maintenance, cleaner, easier to control and develop a desired amount of heat, it gives constant, steady heat versus the rapid hot/cold cycle of wood burning. There is no creosote, no bark, wet mud, dirt, bugs and it doesn't have to be lugged in several times a day (and night) A 5 gallon bucket of coal will give you the same heat as a giant pile of wood on your porch or taking up space where ever you put it.
In my mind there is no contest.


Well said Will... If only the folks outside PA knew what we know. If they try coal just once they would never ask about wood again because it would be a non discussion :lol: The trick is getting them to try coal ;)
dcrane
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: Lightning On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 8:14 am

blrman07 wrote: I experimented with adding wood pellets to my stoker stove and was successful at a 30/70 ratio of wood pellets to rice coal utilizing a carpet feed system, not an up flow auger. 30% wood pellets to 70% rice coal worked. I didn't feel comfortable increase the ratio due to the flammability of the wood pellets in the hopper.


That's a bold experiment. I wonder if my wood pellet stove can burn rice coal :lol:
Keep in mind the BTU rating for each fuel. Coal has 24 million BTU per ton while wood pellets have 16.5 million BTU. So even if you could get both to burn at 80% efficiency, (given wood pellets are $200 per ton) Coal would need to be up over $300 per ton before mixing the two would even make sense economically.
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut Size / White Ash

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 9:13 am

No trick at all. In many, many areas, coal is NOT a sound economic choice. It also is not magic---it requires some work which many people are not inclined to go for. Supply & demand is a funny thing pricing wise. I personally don't care if someone takes the coal leap or not. CHOICES---either absorb the info given here or don't. I'm all for sharing the info I've learned on the FORUM when someone asks, but I'm far from a coal wheeler, dealer. PS---dc, you ARE outside Pa. ;)
freetown fred
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: HITZER 50-93
Coal Size/Type: BLASCHAK Nut/Stove mix

Re: Who makes a quality stove that burns both wood and coal?

PostBy: Lightning On: Fri Jul 12, 2013 9:42 am

freetown fred wrote:No trick at all. In many, many areas, coal is NOT a sound economic choice. It also is not magic---it requires some work which many people are not inclined to go for. Supply & demand is a funny thing pricing wise. I personally don't care if someone takes the coal leap or not. CHOICES---either absorb the info given here or don't. I'm all for sharing the info I've learned on the FORUM when someone asks, but I'm far from a coal wheeler, dealer. PS---dc, you ARE outside Pa. ;)


IN my vicinity natural gas and coal are close, especially when factoring in maintenance. Since I live out of reach of natural gas my other choices are proPAIN, Fuel OUCH and electricUTION... Each rate about 3 times more cost than coal... :lol:
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut Size / White Ash

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